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Turkey: Istanbul residents welcome ruling that converts Hagia Sophia back into mosque03:09

Turkey: Istanbul residents welcome ruling that converts Hagia Sophia back into mosque

Turkey, Istanbul
July 10, 2020 at 19:45 GMT -00:00 · Published

Istanbul residents welcomed the decision of a court to annul the world-famous Hagia Sophia's museum status, converting it back into a mosque, on Friday.

A crowd of people was seen gathered outside the landmark with Turkish flags and prayer rugs.

"I find the Council of State's decision very positive and in place," said local Mehmet Yıldız, before adding that he hopes to come back soon to perform Friday prayers.

"This is a late but great decision. This way, an 84-year-long captivity has ended," commented another local, Eda Topcu.

"We've been waiting for a long time, longing to be reunited here. Hopefully we'll see the days when we're going to pray," said resident Esma Nurcu.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Hagia Sophia was originally an Orthodox Christian cathedral before being converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest in 1453. It was turned into a museum in 1934.

Turkey: Istanbul residents welcome ruling that converts Hagia Sophia back into mosque03:09
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Istanbul residents welcomed the decision of a court to annul the world-famous Hagia Sophia's museum status, converting it back into a mosque, on Friday.

A crowd of people was seen gathered outside the landmark with Turkish flags and prayer rugs.

"I find the Council of State's decision very positive and in place," said local Mehmet Yıldız, before adding that he hopes to come back soon to perform Friday prayers.

"This is a late but great decision. This way, an 84-year-long captivity has ended," commented another local, Eda Topcu.

"We've been waiting for a long time, longing to be reunited here. Hopefully we'll see the days when we're going to pray," said resident Esma Nurcu.

A UNESCO World Heritage site, the Hagia Sophia was originally an Orthodox Christian cathedral before being converted into a mosque after the Ottoman conquest in 1453. It was turned into a museum in 1934.

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